My first experience bumping up against the complexities of space/place happened (unsurprisingly) while I was working on a DH project. Over the summer, my colleagues at the Early Caribbean Digital Archive were trying to figure out how to handle contextual encoding (e.g. personographies and placeographies) for our texts. The Text Encoding Initiative had so many possible ways of recording information about people, places, organizations, etc., and we wanted to use those to their fullest extent.
N. Katherine Hayles’ discussion of hyperreading in “How We Read: Close, Hyper, Machine” describes the new ways that digital literature allows scholars and students to read and interact with texts.¹ This was of particular interest to myself and other members of Ryan Cordell’s course “Texts, Maps, and Networks” (#f14tmn). During the first meeting, many of my peers were interested in how different types of reading impact our relationship to the textual object. As we discussed hypertext and hyper-linking, it was observed that the preponderance of linked data could lead to confusion, loss of focus, or even reduced comprehension. To paraphrase a classmate: all of those links make it hard to get to the conclusion of a piece.